Sport in Brief: 07/03/2009

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The Independent Online

The sport's world governing body, the International Cycling Union (UCI), banned the German rider Stefan Schumacher for two years yesterday, after he tested positive for a banned substance at the 2008 Tour de France.

The UCI's decision excludes the time-trial specialist from the sport worldwide until January 2011. The 27-year-old received a two-year ban last month from French races by the French anti-doping authority.

Schumacher (right) said on his website yesterday that he would appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. "One thing is clear: I have not doped and I have nothing to hide," he said.

French officials say they found traces of blood-booster Cera in Schumacher's blood in samples taken before and during last year's Tour. He won two time-trial stages, but could be stripped of the victories. Schumacher was suspended by Team Gerolsteiner after the result became known last September. His new team, Quick Step, then dropped him. UCI said that it had notified the German federation of the global ban.

Schumacher said that the UCI had informed him in a fax that they would adopt the French agency ban. He complained that it did so "without examining the documents, without clearing up the inconsistencies and without a real hearing".

Osborne-Paradis wins in Norway for first ever World Cup victory

Canada's Manuel Osborne-Paradis won the Kvitfjell men's downhill yesterday for the first victory of his Alpine World Cup career. The 25-year-old clocked 1min 47.09sec to beat Austrian favourite Michael Walchhofer by 0.31sec. "It's a lucky win because the piste was less icy than it used to be and you could just let it slide. It's a great surprise," Osborne-Paradis said. "I had so many podium places I expected it to happen someday but certainly not here. To win a World Cup race puts me in another league."

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